No one enjoys having a leak in their home, lest of all a leak coming from the water heater. The good news is a leaking water heater is relatively easy to fix. The most important thing you need to do is take the time to determine the cause and the origin of the leak before taking any other steps.
Why do water heaters leak?
No one enjoys hot water heater leaking. But it is important to know why it happens in order to know what to avoid doing and how to keep your water heater safe. Here are some common reasons why your water heater is leaking.
1. Your heater is just old:
Like every other thing, your water heaters can get old and become faulty as well. Although we must add that when you compare the average heater against other house old appliances, the heaters usually come out on top.
The average heater can function seamlessly without any issues for up to 10 years and this holds for heaters that do not get serviced. But time can fly by fast and if you are not careful, you could find your water heater leaking from the top or your water heater leaking from the bottom.
2. Fault outlets:
Your water heater deals with hot and cold water and it uses separate outlets to take the cold water in and bring the hot water out. Due to their unique position, these hot and cold inlets and outlets are a lot susceptible to damage than the other parts of the heater. This should be your first point of call if you notice you have a leaking water heater.
3. Faulty pressure relief and temperature valve:
You could have a leaking water heater because of a wide variety of reasons. However, a common culprit is the temperature and pressure relief valve. If the valve is dealing with an inordinate amount of pressure, it could cause the valve to start malfunctioning. This could also be caused by the temperature of the water being raised to really high levels which could cause damage to the valves as well.
4. Faulty drain valve:
Since the drain valve was designed to remove any sediment that finds its way into the water heater, it should be no surprise if it drips a bit. However, there is a difference between an occasional drip and a full-blown leak. Check your drain valve to ensure the fault doesn’t lie there.
How to Know Your Water Heater is about to leak
Unless your tank has managed to get a huge hole within it, you might not notice the leak immediately. A great way to know if your heater is leaking to inspect it regularly but most homeowners don’t do this.
Here are the ways to know if your water heater is about to leak:
1. The exterior of the water heater suddenly becomes rusty:
You do not have to detect rust in the water before you can tell your heater might have a leak in the near future. A safer bet would be to inspect the exterior of your heater to check if rust has begun to form on it. If you notice rust forming on it, it is a strong indicator that your system has been compromised and there is a leak somewhere. You should begin an inspection as soon as possible to locate the source of the leaks.
2. Your heater is begun to product loud noises:
Debris is going to fall within the water heater. For the most part, the debris would not affect your heater and you wouldn’t even know it is there. But eventually the debris will harden and will begin to cause noise whenever the heater is in use.
3. You begin to notice puddles of water around the heater:
Although this might seem obvious, this is another indicator that your water heater is leaking. Monitor your heater regularly and once you notice any indicator like this, simply begin the inspection process listed above.